Kirkley & Pakefield - A bright outlook for club
Major off-the-field changes and developments have ensured that it has been a 'very busy' few weeks at Kirkley & Pakefield FC. And while the close season has so far been dominated by outgoings at Walmer Road, The Royals boss Jon Reynolds - now in sole charge after Stewart Larter left last month - was quick to stress that the future is bright for the young Ridgeons League side.
Major off-the-field changes and developments have ensured that it has been a “very busy” few weeks at Kirkley & Pakefield FC.
And while the close season has so far been dominated by outgoings at Walmer Road, The Royals boss Jon Reynolds - now in sole charge after Stewart Larter left last month - was quick to stress that the future is bright for the young Ridgeons League side.
K&P will return to training next week, with Reynolds as first team manager for the coming season to be ably assisted by Marty Hubble and Russell Stock as first team coaches.
Stock will also combine the role as he continues to play up front for the youthful K&P side, and Reynolds revealed this week that the “experience” and “leadership” that they'll bring will be crucial components to the new-look management structure.
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“I've known Marty such a long time, he was a great player and has achieved so much that he will be a tremendous asset for us,” Reynolds said. “Russell is a leader on the pitch and in the dressing room and the youngsters relate to him - so having him involved in this role is in effect an extra pair of eyes and ears on the pitch for us too.”
After Chris Henderson left the club towards the end of last season, Nathan Stone also departed Walmer Road this week to play at a higher league standard. Full back Lewis Blois has also left the club by mutual consent, but the rest of the K&P squad from last season remain.
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“We are still working hard on a couple of players coming in, but the emphasis has changed from a couple of years ago,” Reynolds admitted. We have such a massive youth section at the club with over 70 teams that we should be utilising this infrastructure and bringing the youngsters through.”
Pinpointing the success of Henderson and Stone, who came to the club as youngsters and are now playing at higher levels, Reynolds admitted that during last season's successful run for their best-ever league and cup finishes “people had forgotten” just how young the likes of Ian Dawson, Scott Manning, Joe Jefford, Ryan De Coteau and Taz Grint were.
And while he anticipated that it would be another “tough” campaign ahead, with Leiston already recruiting new players from across East Anglia, Reynolds said: “The aspiration will be to achieve what we did last year, and yes without the likes of Henderson and Stone it may take time, but the aim is to have a fluidity amongst the whole club as all the sides play the same way.”
With training for the whole club commencing next week, K&P will prepare for the new campaign with a “very competitive” run of pre-season games against Sudbury Town, Bury Town and Needham Market from mid-July onwards.
THE adult section of K&P will be holding their annual general meeting on Saturday, July 3 at 10am in the Kirkley Community Sports & Social Club at Walmer Road.
All committee members, club members and prospective new committee members are invited to attend. The club's annual five-a-side competition will be held on Sunday, July 25.